2018 is officially coming to a close. I think I say this every year but it's true that I kind of cannot believe it's over. Such a busy year I thought it would be fun to share the highlights with you all and set a few goals!

In January I was invited to the first ever Minneapolis Bloggers Union event. I have to be honest, it's funny to think of this now but I really wasn't sure what it was and was hesitant about going. I reached out to another friend who I thought might be invited and she encouraged me to go. I am so glad that I did. I met some truly amazing girls who I have laughed with and learned from. A true community of women was created and I consider myself truly lucky to have been a part of it from the start. Not sure how little ol' me got included in this group of ladies, but I am grateful.

This was a busy month. I kind of impulsively decided to spend a long weekend in Chicago to visit my cousin and one of my all-time favorite humans. She took me to the Green Mill which is an old jazz club, and actually was in the neighborhood I lived. It was a great trip and so fun to be with her.

February was also my girl's, Reese, first birthday. It was incredibly surreal to celebrate this day. I never thought I would have kids at all so the day she was born and her first birthday was crazy experiences. Not only do I have a child, but she is 1 year old. She was walking and gibbering. She is opinionated and hilarious. Her second birthday is around the corner right now and this fact continues to stun me.

MARCH 2018
This was a fairly quiet month. We were gearing up for our trip in April so we kept it low key. We also did our low-carb March diet so I was mostly miserable outside of St. Patrick's Day. This is one of my favorite days of the year. This year it was on a Saturday and it was a beautiful day! We had a fabulous time.

APRIL 2018
We traveled with two great friends to Mexico for a week, childless. It was glory. The weather was beautiful every single day and we had a fabulous time. I am definitely at that stage where I can lay around for days at a time and not get bored. Bring me all the cerveza. We also checked something off or bucket list and visited Chichen Itza. The whole place was enormous and we didn't get to see it all, but we saw some of the major pieces. Truly awesome to see what the Mayans were able to accomplish. Read more about it here.

MAY 2018
This month one of our good friends guilted us into finally visiting him in Milwaukee. He moved the summer before and we just hadn't been able to get out there. We finally found the time over the Memorial Day weekend. I have always heard what a fun city it was so having an excuse to see it was a double win. We basically spent one day drinking through the city and had a blast!

JUNE 2018
For Father's Day this year my dad wanted to go to the horse track. The closest one is actually cart racing. Another thing I have actually never done despite it being so close to home. I am not much of a gambler, but on Father's Day what he says goes. The weather started out really junky, raining like crazy and we thought the night would be a bust. After about an hour it cleared up and races resumed! We had a great time, despite no one going home a millionaire.

JULY 2018
For the 4th of July we took our annual trip to visit our family in Chicago. This year the Twins actually played the Cubs the weekend before so we had to go see the game. The Twins played like actual garbage and the Cubs won. Nonetheless, we had fun. We also celebrated the holiday with the annual party complete with too many adult beverages and fireworks.

D and I decided that Reese was finally old enough to go to the zoo. Last summer she wouldn't have understood it but this summer we thought she would be ready for it. We decided to take her to the free zoo (Como Zoo) in case she got upset quickly or something. She did really love it but she has the attention span of a fruit fly, so we basically buzzed through the whole zoo in 20 minutes. It was worth it though.

We also traveled with some of our friends to D's family cabin. We did this last summer and we had so much fun we did it again. We boated around and swam, visited one of our favorite lunch spots and generally just enjoyed some time away.

Oh and for the first time I worked with a professional photographer and LOVED it. The pictures turned out so great and Sammy is so easy to work with! Be sure to check her out.

photo cred: Sammy Slater

The beginning of Fall was a quiet month. One of my favorite singers, Dessa, wrote a book and for once I was excited to read something. I am not much of a reader. I found out she was going to be doing a reading at a local bookstore and my dad and I went to see her (he introduced me to her). She was incredibly thoughtful, funny and entertaining. Everything I have come to expect from her. This is not the best picture of her, she is an animated talker, but you need to check her out.

At the end of  September, we took Reese to an apple orchard for the first time. I was genuinely surprised by how much she enjoyed it. Before long she was walking around by herself and picking apples off trees and eating them. She now is obsessed with apples and I credit that to this day.

This is historically a busy month for us. It's our anniversary and one of our favorite holidays, Halloween.  We spent one day this year at a corn maze. It was pretty windy that day so it was hard to stick around but Reese really enjoyed having the freedom to run around. She basically laughed until she was too tired to walk. There were also all kinds of animals at a petting zoo, all of which she decided made a "grrr..." sound. It's her favorite.

October is also our anniversary and it was our ninth one. We celebrated at Pearl and the Thief in Stillwater and thanks to my lovely sister for babysitting, we got a hotel so we could stay the night. Dinner was delicious, but I have to say their cocktails were better.

This was an exciting month because I walked in my first ever fashion show. I am not positive I did the best job in the whole world but it was unbelievably fun. Local boutique, Primp, held their first-holiday fashion show and they asked me to be a part of it. Everyone at Primp was just as sweet as you would imagine as well. I got to see some old faces and meet some new ones. (p.s doing a $300 Target giveaway with some of these ladies that ends today! Click here!)

The last month of the year may have been the busiest one yet. It started with my favorite holiday concert, The New Standards. I think it has been at least five years I have been attending this now and it may have been there best show yet. Work busyness hit its peak and things have changed drastically. I actually got a promotion and so many things are up in the air. It's a crazy time.

Christmas was extra special this year because Reese was old enough to really celebrate. She enjoyed opening gifts and it was a joy to watch. She got Moana for Christmas and it took her a minute to register before she shouted 'MAUI!' She also got a shirt from my sister-in-law that she just kept wandering around with, it was hilarious. As quickly as Christmas came it went and the year has come to a close.

That was a lot of reviews so I will keep the goals short. I am not much for resolutions. Resolutions tend to infer some major overhaul change and I am a believer in smaller, micro changes to get to ultimate goals. So here goes...

1. Work/life balance
This was all out of wack this year. Work got busier than ever before and major changes were made throughout the year. I was bringing work home almost every night since September and I was burned out. I do all that self-care stuff (exercise, sleep, eat right) but that wasn't enough. I have started working towards figuring out efficiency during the work day so I can just be at home at night. It's not perfect and it won't work all the time but I am determined to be better at it. I am working towards less distractions at work and being more intentional

2. Travel
This feels the most resolution-y of the bunch but it's true. D and I keep talking about a Europe trip and it gets pushed off. It's our 10 year wedding anniversary this year and I was hoping we could do it then but that's just not possible. I do want to go somewhere though so if anyone has any good suggestions. I want to make steps towards more travel, there's a whole world to see and I am done putting it off, plans will be made.

3. The Blog
This year was very career focused and next year I want to put more energy into the blog. I want to put out better content and more intentional content. You will see more polls from me to find exactly what y'all want to see. I want to make this actual blog look prettier and more reflective of me and my style. I have to say the Minneapolis Bloggers Union and the people I have met there are inspirational and so helpful. I just need to build on the tools I have been given.

That's all the goals I can have for now, it's all I can handle, ha! What are your goals for 2019?


"Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody's ever made before. Don't freeze, don't stop, don't worry that it isn't good enough, or it isn't perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.

Whatever it is you're scared of doing, Do it.

Make your mistakes, next year and forever.” 
― Neil Gaiman

Also linking up with Bloved Boston